If you have real estate investments, put them in your estate plan

You’ve invested a lot of time and money into your portfolio. You have real estate investments that you’re banking on to support you and your family in the future. As part of your estate plan, you want to make sure that these investments won’t go to waste.

You may have questions about how to protect these assets. Fortunately, there are a few good ways to protect your investments. One is to create a trust for them.

Real estate and other valuable items in your estate may need to go through probate if you haven’t taken steps to keep them out of probate. If you put your assets into a trust, then they may not need to go through probate, which means that you could directly transfer the properties to your beneficiaries.

For real estate, there are specialized trusts called qualified personal residence trusts, or QPRT, which you may want to look into. These help you by removing the properties from your estate and helping your estate have a lower value to avoid federal estate taxes. Additionally, with this kind of trust, you may continue to live in your primary property for a predetermined length of time without having to worry about selling or passing on the residency to your beneficiary.

Another option would be to add someone as a joint owner on a piece of property. Then, if you pass away, they will immediately become the primary owner of the property. This is an easy way to make sure the correct person gets the investment properties from you directly rather than through other means. Our website has more on real estate and investments, estate planning and your options.